Client Impact Assessment of Women's Entrepreneurship Development Program in Bangladesh

Assessing the impacts of Women's Enterprise Development Project on clients and their households

This paper presents the findings of an assessment conducted to determine the impact of the Women's Enterprise Development Project (WEDP) in Bangladesh on borrowers. The study reveals that nearly all clients reported that status in their households has improved since they began taking WEDP loans. Many also cited an improved status in the community. Findings include:

  • WEDP has had a major positive impact on women's entrepreneurship and decision-making abilities. Well over a third of WEDP borrowers manage their businesses entirely on their own and another 22% manage their businesses jointly with their husbands. An even larger group, 58% of respondents, report that they alone control the income from their businesses;
  • About 20% of the borrowers make a major contribution to household income from earnings. There is less tension in their households because there is less financial strife, better food and a greater ability to meet their children's educational expenses;
  • Several women said that they no longer need to borrow from neighbors or money-lenders to finance their businesses or to meet household expenses;
  • Few have been able to increase their personal savings. For many of them, the savings facility offered by WEDP has enabled them to start a savings deposit account that will eventually grow with regular bi-weekly deposits;
  • WEDP's most significant impact on employment has been the creation or expansion of borrowers' own self-employment.

About this Publication

By Koopman, J.